Behind the Camera: ‘Mountain in the Mist’ – Holyhead, Anglesey


This is Holyhead Mountain – not really a mountain, but being close to the sea gives it a more majestic look – and it’s quite photogenic because it is often enveloped in fog or has a layer of cloud trapped by an inversion layer over it.

Rather than use a UV filter of polarizer to remove the haze that swathed the mountain, I made use of it, giving the mountain and sea a softer feel.

I shot this using a Canon 5D MkIII with a 70-200mm lens set to F8. I used a tripod, because I wanted to keep the ISO in the basement – ISO 100 – so the shutter speed was a little slow at 1/125th of a second.

However, in post processing I chose to take an inverse approach to the look of the image, keeping the mountain looking soft, but processing the clouds so that they have a harder edge to them by applying a graduated filter to the sky and applying some clarity and increasing the contrast.

On top of that, I used a radial filter and elongated it to cover the haze and the sea and added some negative clarity to it to soften the mountain and sea a tad.

For the final processing I gave the photo an antique or sepia look. Why? Because I like it! A landscape like this is works well in black and white, but by adding some cross processing sepia colors, it gives this shot a timeless look.

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